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20 Best Outdoor Vacations for Firefighters

Tania Khadder

June 11, 2010

20. Hiking the Appalachian Trail

The Appalachian Trail is 2,175 miles of mostly wilderness, stretching from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Katahdin, Maine. It is the most celebrated footpath in North America, and hiking the full length of it can take up to six months for the truly hardcore. Should you decide to through-hike it, your strength, endurance and tolerance for bugs will be tested like never before. But you’ll also walk through a a new and beautiful place every day and at the end of it you’ll be in the best shape of your life.

What? You don’t have six months to kill? There are numerous day-long and overnight hikes at points along the trail —after all, it runs through 14 states. Some noteworthy, shorter trails include Pennsylvania’s Blue Mountain and Tennessee’s Laurel Fork Gorge and Falls. Find the one closest to you, pack your backpack and hit the trail.

Learn more about the history of the area, check out interactive maps and tons of other information on hiking the trail here.